Streptozotocin-induced diabetes mellitus in pigs

R. Grussner, R. Nakhleh, A. Grussner, G. Tomadze, P. Diem, D. Sutherland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


We induced, as a precondition for a pancreas transplant, insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus in 67 Yorkshire Landrace pigs by administering streptozotocin. A dosage of 150 mg/kg body weight gave rise to a long-lasting diabetes mellitus that persisted with time (follow-up period: 26 weeks). Consecutive measurements of serum glucose and plasma insulin, before and up to 30 hours after administering streptozotocin, revealed triphasic behavior: initial hyperglycemia (1st to 3rd hour), pronounced hypoglycemia (12th to 18th hour), then hyperglycemia (22nd hour on). IVGTTs done 1 to 7 days after administering streptozotocin revealed a reduction of the K-value (glucose disappearance rate) from 0.3 (day 2) to 0.07 (day 4). Immunohistochemical studies revealed a complete loss of all β-cells, concomitantly with a relative increase in glucagon- and somatostain-positive cells. We also observed a complete loss of pp (pancreatic polypeptide)-positive cells. Diabetes induced by streptozotocin at 150 mg/kg body weight is complete and permanent; our mortality rate was 0%. Given the high morbidity rate after pancreatectomy, streptozotocin should be the method of choice for inducing diabetes mellitus in pigs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)199-203
Number of pages5
JournalHormone and Metabolic Research
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Experimental Diabetes Mellitus
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Insulin
  • Intravenous Glucose Tolerance Test (IVGTT)
  • Streptozotocin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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